Al Hosn Festival opens with music, food, art and heritage to celebrate UAE Golden Jubilee

Al Hosn Festival opens with music, food, art and heritage to celebrate UAE Golden Jubilee

Browsing Al Hosn Pageant, it is possibly ideal to enter from the gate opposite to Falcon Tower. That is, if you’re aiming for a to some degree chronological encounter.

The cultural celebration, getting position at the historic Qasr Al Hosn fort until eventually December 4, is divided into 3 sections signifying the earlier, present and foreseeable future. Enter from the north-western entrance and you are going to quickly deal with a grid of stalls that are built of palm reeds that give the effect of an outdated Emirati village.

There is the thud of the daf and Al-Ras drums in the air. A line of Emirati men dance the Al Ayala, a stick dance that displays war. Camels rate at the foot of the historic stone structure, and kids engage in impromptu game titles of chase, dressed in regular garb.

The once-a-year party, organised by the Department of Lifestyle and Tourism – Abu Dhabi, celebrates the UAE’s 50th anniversary by providing visitors a chance to master and interact with the country’s heritage.

In the stalls, you will uncover plenty of regular meals, handicrafts and jewelry for sale. Local artisans also display screen inherited weaving methods these types of as Al Sadu, which utilizes the wool of sheep, camels and goats, as nicely as Khoos, which includes braiding palm fronds to sort every day objects these types of as the circular Surood, on which meals is positioned, or the admirer-like Mahafa, employed to neat oneself or enthusiast a flame.

You will also discover some significantly less expected crafts and artisans are a lot more than eager to elaborate on their strategies, even educating you a couple novel competencies.

Rashid Al Antari is a blacksmith hobbyist who says he is one particular of the several sword makers in the state. Sitting cross-legged in front of a miniature forge, he hammers the metal into shape, undisturbed by the amber sparks wafting all-around him.

There are two principal sorts of swords that had been historically utilised in the UAE, he points out. “The qatarra is the a little bit curved and was a favorite in Abu Dhabi, Al Ain and Dubai. In the northern emirates, these as Ras Al Khaimah, the additional symmetrical saif is used.”

Al Antari has a lot more than a decade’s value of practical experience in making and offering swords. It’s his favored way of unwinding soon after a very long day’s perform, and he has spent a terrific deal of time perfecting his method, learning how to differentiate concerning varying features of metal. He has also devised his possess branding system, embossing the foundation of the blade with a circular emblem that reads Sakhr, or rock, as properly as a tapered indentation in the centre of the sword.

Sitting down across from him at the festival is an elderly guy who is also sustaining a somewhat neglected craft: hand-stitching sails.

Muhammed Al Marzoogi states whilst the manufacturing unit-developed sails of right now are preferred by race boats for their light weight, they are typically made by synthetic fibres this kind of as polyester and nylon that aren’t incredibly resilient.

“These sails had been vital to our livelihood,” he states. “While sails designed in manufacturing unit are light-weight and brief to make, a modest rip would quickly spread and depart you dead in the drinking water.”

Al Marzoogi’s sails are alternatively built of all-natural resources these as cotton and are more resilient. “Even if it rips, the sail will get you back residence,” he suggests, piercing the canvas with a bodkin and functioning a thread along the hem in a neatly scalloped line.

As you move into the festival’s Makers Village, you’ll arrive throughout a sequence of commissioned is effective by Emirati artists that place an ground breaking spin on standard handicrafts and approaches. Shaikha Al Ali’s Thoub introduces structural style and design to common clothes, reinterpreting the common mkhwara costume by the craft of hand-pleating.

“[Al Ali] worked with a master pleater to create a approach that responded to maritime crafts,” claims Zuhoor Al Sayegh, assistant curator at Abu Dhabi’s Cultural Foundation. Though regular pleating incorporates a vertical style and design, she says Al Ali wanted to implement the strategy in an oblique gridded sample to allude to traditional fishing nets.

In other places, Noura Al Serkal’s Benefit combines pure and plastic silver threads to set a novel touch on the sheila, the standard Emirati women’s masking, highlighting the garment’s spot at “the ever-evolving nexus of lifestyle and fashion”, according to the work’s caption. A online video is projected on to the installation, which depicts the course of action of metallic embroidering.

Al Sayegh says sourcing the pure silver threads was a problem, but that it was critical for the function as its weave with silver plastic explores “the interchangeability amongst a little something so treasured and high priced and something mass produced”.

Rawdha Al Ketbi’s set up, meanwhile, is impressed by the tarabeesh, the conventional garment worn by Emirati guys, and exaggerates its braided variety in size to variety a wave-like construction. Ayesha Hadhir’s Serenades requires on the classic fishing internet, acknowledged as Al Gargour, in a playful, inflatable style and design.

A further operate, A Prayer by Maitha Hamdan, interlaces prayer veils in a box body set up to depict the energy of unity and appreciate for her Emirati roots. “She’s developing these tensions speaking about the units of prayer and meditation,” Al Sayegh claims. “[Hamdan] is going to also lead a images workshop for all ages that is about capturing fabric in emotion.”

A sequence of other workshops ranging from all-natural dyeing to calligraphy and coral sculptures are also getting held at the pageant. In addition, the Makers Village provides a collaboration among the Property of Artisans and Fatima Bint Mohamed Bin Zayed Initiative, which gives females employment in the weaving field in Afghanistan.

The co-procedure will final result in the generation of a textured rug that incorporates unique weaving procedures to symbolise the collaborative spirit amongst the UAE and Afghan communities.

As you venture off to the festival’s remaining section, you will see a number of start-up firms and retail vendors that purpose to consider lots of of the common areas of Emirati culture into the upcoming, these as Laggar, which provides a contemporary interpretation of the handcrafted sandals worn by adult men.

This segment also capabilities an open-air cinema, with screenings hosted by Graphic Country Abu Dhabi, the property-grown film and enjoyment company in the UAE funds.

An inflatable framework by French artist Cyril Lancelin looms right here. Dubbed Pyramid Hexagon, the installation capabilities repetitive geometric designs that compliment the UAE’s sabkha (sandflat) formations. The website will also be hosting a sequence of dwell performances by community musicians, together with Arqam and DJ Karrouhat.

Over-all, Al Hosn Competition separates by itself from other cultural occasions in the state by the quantity of engagement with the neighborhood heritage it offers to the general public.

With some proactiveness and warmth, you might find by yourself finding out the good way of throwing a fishing line or the finer nuances of sword-crafting. But much more than that, you can learn how community handicrafts and customs are staying redefined by the newer generation and evolving to contemporary desires and preferences.

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Current: November 27th 2021, 11:40 AM